17 Best Drones (Available to Consumers) in 2016

17 Best Drones (Available to Consumers) in 2016
January 12, 2016 Man of Many

17 Best Drones (Available to Consumers) in 2016

By in Featured, Tech on

By now, most people are aware of the soaring popularity of recreational consumer drones (pun intended). The best drones make for the perfect holiday gift and with good reason. These diminutive flying devices are loads of fun for operators of all ages. Let’s take a look at some of the best drones on the consumer market in 2016.


You might also like:

CES 2016 Product Round-Up – Part 1
CES 2016 Product Round-Up – Part 2
CES 2016 Product Round-Up – Part 3


 

DJI Phantom 3 4K

1. DJI Phantom 3 4k

Flight Time: 25 minutes
Range: 5km (3.1 miles)
Camera: 4K video, 12 megapixel photos
Speed: 16 m/s
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The DJI Phantom 3 4K is one of the easiest and best drones to fly. It has a helpful vision positioning system, GPS-assisted hover, automatic flight logs and a 3-axis gimbal for camera stabilization. The drone’s remote can be mastered in minutes. Its GO app features a live high definition view, an easy to use video editor, autopilot functionality and a built-in flight simulator for practice sessions.

Purchase

 

 

3DR Solo

2. 3DR Solo

Flight Time: 25 minutes
Range: Up to half a mile
Camera: 12 MP, video up to 4K
Speed: 88km/h (55 MPH)
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The 3DR Solo has become wildly popular thanks to its remarkable high-tech features. This is the only drone on the consumer market that allows the user to control both the copter and the camera in mid-flight. Create your own “Smart Shots” with the drone’s 1GHz Linux computer that can function as a cameraman or pilot, to reenact signature Hollywood camera tricks. Establish the specific shot you desire, hit the “play” button and let the 3DR Solo do its thing. Regardless of your experience with drones, capturing beautiful multi-axis cinematic live HD footage is made easy with the 3DR Solo. Other Solo features include fine-grain tilt control, preset camera angles, live HD video, one-touch shot control and the ability to record directly to a camera roll. This is undoubtedly one of the best drones on the consumer market.

Purchase

 

Yunec Q500 plus

3. Yuneec Q500

Flight Time: Up to 25 minutes
Range: Up to 800m
Camera: CGO3 4K gimbal, 12 megapixels
Speed: 27km/h (17 MPH)
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The Yuneec Q500 allows you to capture your surroundings from above with incredible ease. The drone has a “Personal Ground Station” equipped with a built-in touchscreen, an integrated 3-axis gimbal camera, a No-Distortion lens, 1080p/120fps slow motion style video and 2K/30fps high definition video. The gimbal camera captures life in crystal clear 4K for the ultimate detail. The drone is paired to a “SteadyGrip” handheld device that facilitates smooth ground shots from the air.

Purchase

 

 

DJI Inspire

4. DJI Inspire 1

Flight Time: 18 minutes
Range: Upwards of 5 km (3.1 miles)
Camera: 12.76 M pixels
Speed: 22 m/s
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

DJI is a name synonymous with the best drones and the Inspire 1 is one of their premier offerings thanks to futuristic aerial technology and a seamless navigation system. Featuring carbon fiber arms that allow the drone to quickly and easily manoeuvre through the air, the Inspire 1 enables users to capture footage across a full 360 degrees, regardless of the direction that the drone is flying. Other Inspire 1 niceties include cutting edge 13 inch quick release motors with DJI’s special Z-Blade design, autopilot functionality, curved magnets at the edges of the motors that prevent airflow gaps within the motor and Electronic Speed Controllers for closed loop torque control.

Purchase

 

Parrot Bebop 2

5. Parrot Bebop 2

Flight Time: 25 minutes
Range: Up to 250m
Camera: Fisheye lens 14 megapixels
Speed: 18 m/s
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The Parrot Bebop weighs a mere 400g, making it one of the lightest and best drones on the consumer market. Its minimal stature makes it quite easy to control and extremely safe. If the drone collides with anything, the propellers will immediately stop and an emergency mode will take over to land the drone. There is also a GPS-enabled “Return Home” function that brings the Bebop back to its original take-off point. Yet this little copter is about more than mere safety. It is equipped with a Drone 2.0, P7 dual-core computer with 8 GB of flash memory inside of a magnesium compartment to protect against electromagnetic forces. This drone even creates its own Wi-Fi hotspot with its two dual-band antennas.

Purchase

 

Hubsan FPV X4

6. Hubsan X4 FPV H107D

Flight Time: 7 minutes
Range: 100m
Camera: 480P
Speed: N/A
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The Hubsan X4 FPV H107D is the world’s smallest first person view (FPV) quadcopter. It is perfect for travelers or those who simply want to have fun in an open space. The drone features a 4.3 inch LCD screen, an integrated remote control and the ability the roll and flip 360 degrees. It can even be safely operated in dark areas.

Purchase

 

 

Air Hogs Helix X4 Stunt

7. Air Hogs RC Helix X4 Stunt

Flight Time: Varies
Range: Varies
Camera: None
Speed: N/A
Smartphone/Tablet Control: N/A

Sometimes the best drones are the ones built to endure any challenge. The Helix X4 Stunt is a high-performance drone that can be maneuvered at fast speeds. Users can easily perform three unique stunts while the drone is in mid-air by merely pushing a button. Go ahead and flip or barrel roll this drone to your heart’s content. The drone’s full 4-channel control allows users to control the copter with remarkable precision.

Purchase

 

DJI Phantom 3 Standard

8. DJI Phantom 3 Standard

Flight Time: 25 minutes
Range: 805m (0.5 miles)
Camera: 12 megapixel photos, 2.7K video camera
Speed: 16 m/s
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

Expect any list of best drones to include at least a few DJI models–the brand truly reigns supreme. The DJI Phantom 3 Standard drone is equipped with the most accessible “smart” flying camera on the consumer market. Its built-in camera produces glorious 2.7K HD video along with stunning 12 megapixel photos. There is also a handy DJI GO app that allows users to record and share content with ease. Go ahead and connect the device and launch the app to enjoy a live HD view right on the screen, an easy video editor and a built-in flight simulator. Other features of the DJI Phantom 3 Standard include GPS-assisted hover capability, automatic flight logs, autopilot functionality and a custom built remote with intuitive controls. The automatic flight assistant empowers the Phantom 3 to return to the operator with the mere push of a button. You can even set distance and height limits so that the drone stays within a specified range for safety purposes.

Purchase

 

 

3DR Iris plus

9. 3DR IRIS+

Flight Time: 16-22 minutes
Range: Varies
Camera: N/A, compatible with GoPro HD Hero
Speed: Varies
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The 3DR IRIS allows users to take video and photos from distant perspectives. 3DR’s renowned autopilot powers the IRIS to fly through the sky while keeping a steadily holding the camera. It features a two-axis gimbal for stabilization, tablet-based software that lets you draw up a flight plan, a Pixhawk autopilot system, ground station radio and so much more.

Purchase

 

Axis Aerius

10. Axis Aerius

Flight Time: 7 minutes
Range: 9m (30 feet)
Camera: N/A
Speed: Two pre-programmed speeds
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

For those who think the best drones come in small packages, look no further than the uber-small Aerius. It’s available in a myriad of colors–black, green, blue and orange–with dimensions measuring in at a mere 3 cm by 3 cm by 2 cm. There’s also a diminutive 2.4 gHZ controller equipped with its own drone storage compartment. The Aeris also has a helpful 6-axis gyro-stabilization that keeps it centered and stable at all times. Turn on the pre-programmed trick mode and the Aeris will perform rolls and flips to your delight.

Purchase

 

Parrot Disco

11. Parrot Disco

Flight Time: 45 minutes
Range: Not yet determined
Camera: Full HD, 1080P
Speed: Not yet determined
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

Let’s be honest–the military most likely has the best drones on the planet and us citizens won’t be getting our hands on those high-tech gadgets any time soon. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t buy a consumer drone that looks like it was designed in an army facility. The Parrot Disco is an uber-light, wing-shaped drone that even a beginning drone operator can fly with ease. Attach the wings to the body, send it in the air and let the fun begin. The Parrot Disco connects to the unique Parrot ecosystem via a Wi-Fi connection so it can be piloted with its “Skycontroller”. There is also built-in GPS so users can take advantage of the drone’s accompanying Flight Plan app. Like the above referenced Bebop drone, the Disco also has the triple axis digital stabilization camera. It can take flight and land on its own to prevent any possible mishaps. The Disco can even enter a “loiter” mode in which it circles a specific designation or object of interest.

Purchase

 

Yunec Typhoon H

12. Yunec Typhoon H

Flight Time: Not yet determined
Range: Not yet determined
Camera: 4K video, 12 megapixel photos
Speed: Not yet determined
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The Yunec Typhoon H is an upscale drone with an array of high-tech features. It sports retractable landing gear, six rotors (as opposed to the traditional four) and an HD camera that pans 360 degrees. The Typhoon H even has what is being dubbed “ultrasonic proximity detection” that empowers it to avoid clipping (or smashing into) objects.

Purchase

 

AirDog

13. AirDog

Flight Time: Up to 18 minutes
Range: AirLeash range extends to 820 feet
Camera: Optimized for GoPro cameras
Speed: 68km/h (42 mph)
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The AirDog is the first-ever auto-follow drone specially designed for those who enjoy adventure sports. If you surf, kitesurf or wakeboard, you will immediately fall in love with the AirDog. It contains an internal 14.8 V 5600 mAh LiPo battery that powers your GoPro camera. There is special protective casing that safeguards the camera at all times. The AirDog’s construction is weatherproof and remarkably durable compared to other drones on the consumer market. Its operational ceiling extends to an impressive 11,500 feet above sea level thanks to its long range Bluetooth connection.

Purchase

 

Hexo Plus

14. Hexo+

Flight Time: Up to 15 minutes
Range: 91m (300 feet)
Camera: Compatible with GoPro Hero3 as well as Hero4Silver
Speed: 72km/h (45 mph)
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

The Hexo+ drone is best described as an intelligent, self-flying camera. It comes with an easy to use app designed to help you generate amazing videos. You won’t even have to worry about flying the drone, thanks to its advanced technology that handles the takeoff process, flight trajectory and even the landing. Its features include 3-axis stabilization for yaw, roll and pitch and a motion range from 0 to 90 degrees. Let the Hexo+ follow and film you via your smartphone, then share your mind-blowing aerial footage with your friends, who would heartily agree that the best drones aren’t complete with the best camera functions.

Purchase

 

Ar Drone2

15. Parrot AR Drone 2.0

Flight Time: N/A
Range: N/A
Camera: HD wide angle camera lens, 30 FPS, 720p
Speed: 11.11 m/s
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

Like DJI, Parrot makes some of the best drones available to consumers. The Parrot AR Drone 2.0 captures high definition photos and videos that are recorded right onto your smartphone. It has a groundbreaking EPP design that ensures its internal and external integrity regardless of the conditions. All it takes is a single touch of the screen to control the Parrot AR Drone 2.0’s take-off, flight path, flight tricks and landing. The drone’s speed and movements can all be easily adjusted in real-time to create your own customized video sequence. You can even view your flights in 3D.

Purchase

 

Axis Drones

16. Axis Vidius

Flight Time: 7 minutes
Range: 30m (100 feet)
Camera: Video as well as still images in 420p
Speed: Choose between three speeds
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

Pick up the Axis Vidius and you’ll own the world’s most diminutive first person view drone. It measures a mere 4.3 cm by 4.3 cm by 2.5 cm. The Vidius performs rolls and full 360-degree flips as it streams and records live video to your Apple or Android device. The video can even be transmitted directly to the 2.4 gHz controller thanks to the built-in Wi-Fi connection. Go ahead and share your Vidius footage to Facebook, Twitter, your blog etc. by using the accompanying Vidius Drone App.

Purchase

Onagofly

17. Onagofly

Flight Time: 15 minutes
Range: 30m (98 feet)
Camera: 1080p HD video, 30 fps, 15 megapixels
Speed: N/A
Smartphone/Tablet Control: Optional

Rounding out our list of best drones (available to consumers) is the Onagofly. This beauty is controlled by smartphone to capture breathtaking footage (including selfies) from the air. The direct Wi-Fi connection allows operators to move the Onagofly through the sky from nearly 100 feet away. Send it into the air directly from your palm and watch it maneuver around obstacles as it records yourself and your surroundings. Its built-in GPS system records the operator’s position to ensure the best possible selfie shot. The Onagofly’s camera is even equipped with smile and facial detection to help you get the ultimate selfie.

Purchase

Have you subscribed to Man of Many? You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


You might also like:

CES 2016 Product Round-Up – Part 1
CES 2016 Product Round-Up – Part 2
CES 2016 Product Round-Up – Part 3


Get the latest. Get it daily.

Sign up to discover the best gear from Man of Many in our FREE Newsletter.

Comments